Thanks for checking in with Flawed yet Functional today! Regular exercise is necessary for me to keep my blood sugar stable. I have worked out somewhat consistently since I was in middle school, but taking control of my health since the Type 1 Diabetes diagnosis has made me much more disciplined with exercise. It is no longer an activity to keep my body in good shape or be ready for summer (Ha! Why do we even do this to ourselves? Are we supposed to only care about our bodies when it’s hot??). Regular exercise is imperative to my long-term health. But like anyone, I struggle with the desire do it. Today I’d like to share 4 tips for how to motivate yourself to work-out when you just don’t want to.
Select A Routine You Actually Like
For years, I jogged as my primary means of exercise. My office had
beautiful trails for outside running in good weather, and it had a gym with treadmills for when the weather was crummy. I’m so glad I took advantage of the facilities I had at the time, but I’ve come to realize that I don’t enjoy running. Not one bit.
And you know what else? Running is not the only form of exercise! You don’t have to run to be fit. I promise!
After coming to grips with the fact that I don’t enjoy running, I sought out different video programs, trying to find a good fit.
I tried several Beachbody programs, but they were too repetitive for me. When I begin to memorize every word the instructor says or each time they miscount, I toss that program out the window. Too much repetition!
The best fit for me? Thirty to forty minute HIIT/strength work out videos by Fitness Blender. The variety is great (They’ve got hundreds of work out videos, 800+ last I checked!), and the price of their programs is perfect, about $15. The best part? I can’t work-out from my phone anytime, anyplace.
So find a style of exercise you love. No one wants to get up off the couch to do a work-out they hate. If you are struggling to think of ideas, here are a few I came up with:
- Swim laps at your local high school (very cheap!)
- HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training)
- Water aerobics
- Weight training
Prepare For Success
Assume you will work-out at the allotted time and prepare for it by shaping your day to make that successful.
- Set out clothes the night before, and set your alarm with enough time (and snoozes!) to get that work-out in.
- Pack your gym bag the night before if you are working-out on your lunch break, then protect that time! Block off your work calendar, and get up from your desk on time!
- Know what time you need to leave the office to make it to the gym in the evening. Then, be intentional about wrapping up projects and meetings so you can leave on time. Again, block your calendar so meetings do not interfere!
One key to actually getting a work-out in is purposefully setting aside the time and resources so it can happen.
Get A Buddy
Accountability is a powerful thing. Find someone to exercise with you, maybe take a class together at your local gym. Or even have a remote buddy who you can text before and after your work-out to cheer each other on. Join a Facebook group (or start one!) that will hold you accountable.
Just Get Up
Total honesty, this is the biggest issue for me when I’m in an exercise slump: I just need to get my lazy butt out of bed and do it.
Inertia is hard to fight…bodies at rest stay at rest, but on the other hand, bodies in motion stay in motion! There’s an energy that will continue for the whole day if you just get up and get moving. Give it a try and see if it doesn’t work for you. I dare you!
How do you get the “want to” to work-out? You do it even before the feeling is there. The feeling will come.
Finding motivation to exercise is never easy, but following these four tips will give you a greater chance of success. Do something you love. Carve out time in the day and protect that time. Ask someone to hold you accountable, and finally, just do it. Get out of bed, get up from your desk, or walk outside. Whatever it is, put your body in motion and get started!